Wednesday, December 09, 2020

Public service initiative

I have written to the chief executive of Sainsbury’s. There is no need to thank me.



Dear Simon

I am hoping that this matter will not intrude greatly on your daily routine – I am aware that those shelves don’t stack themselves.

I am communicating on behalf of LEICESTER (Local Easily Irritated Citizens [Especially Susceptible to Ear-aching Rubbish]) having spent a less than enjoyable perambulation round the aisles of your local establishment this very morning.

You will recall your excellent initiative at the beginning of lockdown whereby the elderly and infirm were allocated times when they alone could conduct their shopping activities. I was able to take advantage of that and appreciated your kindness. It is true that concentrating the bewildered and gormless into a fixed time period could have led to issues – more than the average number of customers blankly staring at the shelves for no apparent reason while their trolley blocked the lanes, and the meaningless meandering at a pace redolent of the chubby, asthmatic boy in the egg and spoon race to cite two examples – but I was able to zip round the store, and between March and May I only ran over 3 old ladies, all of whom apologised profusely.

Anyway, as I abhor circumlocutory verbosity, I will come to the main reason for this missive, which comes in the form of a request.

Would it be possible to set aside one or two periods each week for the remainder of this month when those not wishing to be assailed by the cacophony of what is politely described as Christmas music, could conduct their purchasing pursuits? All you would have to do is to press the off switch. I appreciate that you might see this request as simplistic, but I have given some thought to the issues arising and would be prepared to sign a waiver. I am cognisant of the health and safety matters resulting from the gathering together of those likely to take advantage of this scheme. Without the “music” (I wonder what Haydn would have called it?) then the sounds of sundry villagers whose disposition might range from mildly nervous to downright grumpy, all tutting, sighing and grumbling might be discomforting for your staff – you may even have to go as far as hiring extra security guards. But, on the whole I think that if you can ride this storm all of your colleagues will benefit from having overcome the challenge and standards will improve. Indeed, I might be inclined to spend more time, and in consequence money, chez vous if it meant not having to listen to some hackneyed jeremiad or the wailings of a third-rate quasi-musical ensemble.

Anyway, my dear old cabbage, give it some thought – but time is running out. I know that you may have other pressing matters to attend to – the issue of your failing to stock wholemeal hot cross buns any longer, and why they were only ever available between New Year and Easter while the other stodgier varieties were and are in abundance throughout the year, for example – but I am sure it will gladden your heart to see me skipping gaily up your produce aisle should you be able to satisfy my plea.

Love and peace


Dave said...

My dear Kenneth,

Thank you for your terse missive. As you rightly say, time is money, so rather than running your suggestion up the company flag-pole, to see which way the corporate wind is blowing, I have decided to take prompt and immediate action. There is not a moment to be lost in dealing with the issue you have raised.

I have spoken to the Head of Corporate in-Store Entertainment, and we have arranged for the record player at your local store to be completely removed for the remainder of Advent, and, indeed, for the jolly old twelve days of Christmas too.

You will be pleased to hear that we have managed to acquire the services of a travelling troop of Scottish bagpipers - COMPLETE WITH KILTS - to enliven your shopping experience for the next few months.

Your humble servant, etc etc.

Vicus Scurra said...

Bugger me, you look just like a disreputable clergyman from East Anglia.

The Mistress said...

I dare not ask your opinion of Morris dancers.

Vicus Scurra said...

Thank you. I am pleased that you still come here to catch up on current events.
Our emporia are generally free of Morris Dancers and other such nuisances. I have never even seen them in the carpark, so if you hear of any being run over, I will not have been the culprit.

Ladybird World Mother said...

Oh, flipping heck, that made me laugh. Thank you for a very fine belly laugh at the end of what has been a rather pleasant day. xxxx

Tony Payne said...

That cacaphony of Christmas muzak wherever you go or it's equivalent whatever the season really winds me up too. Even worse though, walking into a shop playing (c)rap or hip-hop or similar!